Ethan loves science and math. He loves building things and experimenting and often has ideas for things he’d like to make. So, he loves it when there is a science centre in the places we’ve visited on our cross Canada road trip. If you’re planning on taking a trip anywhere with kids, I highly recommending getting a membership from your local science centre, as many of them are a part of the reciprocal agreement, which gives you free admission to science centres across Canada, the US, and the world.

So today, we went to the Discovery Centre in Halifax, but first, we needed some breakfast from IKEA.

Morning

Personal hygiene is quite important when you’ve been on the road for 7 weeks, and Ethan needed to get his ears cleaned out. We know you’re not supposed to clean ear wax, that it’s just supposed to come out on its own, but sometimes you have to take matters into your own hands… or at least let your mom do it.

Ethan then got to work writing in his bullet journal. First up was a list of the food he has tried on the trip, and his review of that food. I’m guessing poutine might be one of his favourites.

He then wanted to catalog his markers and pencil crayons by colour. He has mentioned a few times that he’s going to be much more organized when he gets home, so I guess this is an example of that skill in development.

Then, he finished writing a message to his grandparents before we hit the road.

IKEA Breakfast

We didn’t expect to find an IKEA in Halifax, but this one just opened about a month ago. Perfect for a decent, cheap breakfast, and the free coffee and tea don’t hurt, either. We were very surprised by how busy it was, though.

With breakfast done, Ethan spent some time playing chess on his Kindle. It’s actually a book about chess, and it gives you chess problems to solve.

The weather was rather yucky out. It was raining quite hard at one point and it was very windy. So we stayed at IKEA for a few hours. That meant we were hungry before we left, so we ended up having an IKEA hot dog for a snack.

Afternoon – Discovery Centre

Ethan loves science centres because there is always something that captivates his attention. It also gives us insight into what he’s passionate about and what he’s good at. For example, we know that he loves building things and experimenting with how things work. Luckily, the Discovery Centre had activities that matched perfectly with Ethan.

When we see him building things, and spending ample time trying different designs, we feel like this is why we wanted to homeschool. If Ethan was in traditional school, there would be little to no time for him to create.

Anyway, the Discovery Centre was a big hit, including the alternative energy exhibits. Ethan talked about how we should install a wind turbine on Juju Jr. to help produce energy to charge his auxiliary battery. Awesome idea!

Evening

Dinner time came quick today, and Dong Eun made some delicious chicken pita wraps with last night’s leftovers.

Laundry time

It’s been almost a month since we did laundry at my sister’s place in Toronto. We figured we should do another load…now. So we found a local laundromat called Bluenose and got Ethan to help with folding the laundry. The owners of the place were nice and friendly, so that’s always a bonus.

Badges

After laundry, we went for a swim at a local pool to also have our sorta-weekly shower. Yes, it was clean clothes and clean bodies for a change. Once we were done, we set up camp at Walmart.

Ethan had been talking about making an app or a game, so we asked him to draw out how the app would work. If he can get the basic premise of the game down, we can have the app made.

Ethan then worked on creating badges as a way to motivate himself to do things.

Ethan worked on some math problems before checking out the contest rules for the IKEA toy contest. For the contest, kids are supposed to draw a toy stuffy and if chosen, the toy will be created and sold by IKEA. Not sure he’s into this, so we’ll see how it goes.

So today was mostly about what Ethan did on our first day in Halifax. But that’s ok because we want him to feel involved and to know that we care about what he wants, too.

Tomorrow, we’ll have a look around, but Ethan’s already asking to go back to the Discovery Centre. We’ll see.

If you’re just reading this blog for the first time, we are a family of three traveling across Canada (and likely beyond) in a 1994 VW Westfalia camper van called Juju Jr. Our son Ethan, age 9, is unschooling and so we want him to learn from being on the road and traveling. So he’s also now a roadschooler and we are documenting the trip and his learning on this blog.

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